Monday, April 27, 2009

That Social Networking Guy

My family didn't have much money when I was growing up. Consequently, we were always the LAST family on the block to have the latest and greatest technology. Except, by the time my family owned it, the technology in question was neither "latest" nor "greatest".

1982: Five years after its debut, my twin brother and I received the Atari 2600 for Christmas. In November 1982, the Atari 5200 gaming system had been released.

1987: The Nintendo Entertainment System hit American shores in October 1985. My parents tried to convince me and my brother that this next generation of gaming was a foreign fad, not unlike America's brief infatuation with all things Australia in 1986. When it was obvious that the NES had more staying power than Yahoo Serious ("I know what those words mean, but that sign makes no sense.") my parents finally caved in.

1987: We bought our first microwave oven around this time, as well. If memory serves me, this was the closest we'd ever gotten to being kinda-sorta on the crest of a nationwide craze. Of course, our microwave oven was the size of a small SUV and sounded like the airspace over Shea Stadium whenever it ran.

1989: Our first VCR! This was a huge deal for our household, mostly because it provided a default $12 gift idea for any member of our family. And, if anyone out there is interested in factory-sealed VHS copies of Glory, Ghost or Godfather, Part III, see my mother.

1994: My girlfriend at the time bought me my first pager. This was five years after Sir Mix-A-Lot dropped his single, "Beepers". The thing I miss most from this era is the urban catchphrase "hit me on the hip", which meant…well, you know.

1997: Back when I was buying music on a near-weekly basis, it was nothing but cassettes for me. Hey, they were three or four bucks cheaper than CDs and – more importantly – the only thing my 1986 Ford Tempo could play. In the fall of 1997, however, I bought Mack 10's Based on a True Story and the soundtrack to Gang Related on compact disc. Such timeless West Coast rhymes needed the CD treatment so that their generation-spanning sound and subject matter could last forever.

1999: First cell phone. Just a cheapie flip phone with Sprint as my provider. Hilariously enough, when I first met "That Nicka Guy" in 2003, he was rocking the exact same phone.


So, yeah, I'm officially the last professional on earth to sign up for a LinkedIn account. If you're on board, feel free to "connect". And, yes, I'd be making this same pathetic public plea if another round of layoffs weren't just announced for the week of May 4th at the Unnamed Defense Contractor.

By this time next month, I could be your new neighbor!

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